Our firm was approached by the Owners of Portobello to design a new restaurant for them in the new Taylor Building in the Salinas City Center. The shell space was composed of wood window walls, structural concrete walls, columns, and floors with 14’ high concrete ceilings. The Owner’s food service concept was a deli featuring local Salinas valley produce and a farm-to-table pizzeria, bar and dining facility in a casual but sophisticated urban environment.
We developed an ‘L’ plan for this dual personality multi-functional operation with the kitchen and services tucked away in a ‘box’. The active and lively South Main Street presence features deli cases, fresh produce cooler window and open view of the action in the kitchen. The rich, warm cedar clad back bar and dining space opens to a private building courtyard with ample solar access and protection from the Salinas Valley winds. We used the structure as finish, untouched exposed concrete columns and walls and polished the existing concrete floor to reveal large aggregate. We maintained high ceiling volumes throughout and designed a refined plane of steel beams and trellis that creates a more intimate scale with an industrial look over the service deli and bar. The back-bar features edge lit glass shelving with concealed LED lighting and simple customized steel hardware.
Photos 1-4 by Paul Schraub.
Photo 5 by Kasavan Architects